The last time Olivier Giroud went to a press conference, he did not have the same status.
This Tuesday, it is in the costume of top scorer in the history of the Blues that the tricolor striker, now 52 goals on the clock, appeared in front of the microphones, an hour before training.
In a good mood and freed from this record which we talked about a little too much, the AC Milan striker said he was eager to find England on Saturday in the quarter-finals.
You who experienced the 2018 World Cup and Euro 2021, how has the management of Didier Deschamps changed?
Thank you for this good first question (laughs).
I don't think he has fundamentally changed in his habits and in his way of managing, except that he talks a lot with the players.
It was perhaps less the case with me at the Euro.
But he talks a lot to the players every day and also as the game approaches.
He is in the exchange to make things better.
There is one point on which he has not changed and that is that he still has the same desire to win.
You finally seem to reach consensus.
Is it satisfying or do you think people have short memories?
This record reminds me of the years that have passed.
I have just spent eleven years in the France team with good memories, moments of very high, moments lower... The most important thing is to set a good example, to young football players who want to succeed and believe in their dream.
My background means that I arrived in Blue at 25 years old.
If it can serve as an example for those who have an atypical background, so much the better.
It shows that sometimes you have to be patient, which is not always the case for young people today.
With selflessness and resilience, mountains can be moved.
But beware, I'm not going to stop there, the team still needs me.
But this 52nd goal relieves me enormously.
It shows on my face when I thank Kylian.
This record, people kept telling me about it.
Following the photo of your celebration, the English speak of "Bromance" between you and Mbappé.
What is the nature of your friendship relationship?
There was nothing calculated.
It's a nice photo, and to be honest I laughed a lot at the different montages that followed.
Sport brings magical moments like that.
This is not the goal of victory in the World Cup final.
But to me, he meant a lot.
Especially since every match is difficult to win... This goal was a huge relief.
And my relationship with him is very good, it always has been.
We have a lot of fun on the field, it's this infectious enthusiasm that we want to pass on to those who play less and those who support us.
At what level do you place Kylian Mbappé in the hierarchy of attackers?
He is one of the best players I have played with.
He is amazing at his age.
It is scary and very effective.
Since the start of the competition, he has been crucial for us, decisive.
He's the top scorer I've played with.
But I think we still haven't seen the best of Kylian.
We will see it soon, it will break a lot of records.
He is incredible.
"England have incredible players"
He seems detached from the emotional side of big dates.
Is it common among top athletes?
Everyone has their own personality.
It's easier to evolve on the ground by being detached, by dedramatizing the event.
He seems serene, lucid, calm.
This is why he speaks little in the press.
He focuses on the field.
If it works like that, great.
You spoke at the break of the match against Poland.
Are you used to this kind of intervention?
Raph (Varane) spoke, he had the right words that hit the bulls' heads because on the huge opportunity of the Poles, we are lucky not to be behind.
But he was keen, like Hugo (Lloris) and me, to put a booster shot.
We must not relax, we had to correct certain things, find a compact unit and solidarity in the efforts.
Raph had felt that we let go too easily, that we had gestures of humor that we don't want to see in this team.
We must not forget what we transmit through our body language.
He spoke like that to convey to us the importance of putting a little effort into it.
We feel that Adrien Rabiot is more liberated than in the past, internally and in the field....
Yes, he makes you want to be loved.
For us he is important, he is smiling.
He made a remarkable start to the World Cup.
He's in the oven and in the mill, filling in the gaps, projecting himself forward... I feel he's fulfilled, it's lucky for us to have a guy in the middle like that, especially given the absences.
We can count on Adri to demonstrate all his talent.
What do you think of Gignac's call to congratulate you?
I was at the table, it was late.
I receive a video call... I haven't had time to answer all the messages, but a facetime call from DD... I saw it, I picked up.
I wanted to see his good head which I miss.
It reminds me of memories of the Euro... He's a friend, someone I respect a lot.
He made a point of congratulating me directly, it was a good surprise;
52 goals is the same total as Harry Kane.
How is he different from you?
I talked about it with Hugo.
He is a player who has a profile comparable to mine.
He's big, powerful, has good heading and is a good point of attachment.
But he likes to go down lower, to participate in the game. He is also very comfortable in the decisive passes.
He is quite clinical in the area, he is a scorer, but he also knows how to highlight his partners.
You will have to watch him closely.
We have similarities but we still have seven years of difference.
How do you judge the England team?
They are having a very good tournament.
It's going to be a good game on Saturday.
We don't want to lose to them.
We will see, there are incredible players.
They have quality and quantity, the ability to play in different options.
Hope it goes well for us.
Will the key to the match be on the sides?
The profile of the side players makes them go fast, hit, take up space.
These are rarer qualities in the axis.
There are incredible players in all compartments of the game. This may be one of the keys.
It will be necessary to be solid defensively, to block the corridors well.
But they too will have to be vigilant in their area.
It's a very complete team, dangerous also on set pieces, with tall players.
There have been many withdrawals from the France team.
Is this ability to adapt the strength of the Blues?
We have been very strong since the beginning because we have a good team cohesion.
We remember those who stayed home for injury, we also win for them.
Unfortunately, we don't have these great players, but we have this great state of mind that allows us to do what we do.
No one has kept their title of world champion since Brazil in 1962?
How can France do it?
We are confident as a team in our qualities.
We still have three games to win to equal this record.
But there, we don't want to think about that.
We're just focusing on England and what's next, we'll see later.
It looks like you could play until you're 40...
I feel very good, I continue to have an interesting level at 36 years old.
Someone wise told me one day: “We are all 20 years old, the rest is experience.
“I play as if I were 20 years old, like a young person who is hungry and has just arrived.
At some point my body will tell me stop.
But for now, he's cashing in, so I'm setting myself zero limits.